StarCraft® II

Zerglings need HP upgrade in mid-game

I have been playing since SC1 came out but am only ranked high Silver, so maybe I am just playing Zerg wrong. Either way I find mid-game Zerglings to be drastically less effective in SC2. First my proposed solution then my reasoning.

Solution:
Add an upgrade at the Spawning Pool that requires Lair.
Cost: 150m, 150g, 120t
Effect: Increase Zergling HP to 50 from 35 (no change to banelings)

Reasoning:
My initial observations came from ladder play in mid and late game. I would have lots of minerals and larvae but not much gas. The only army unit that does not require gas is Zergling. They are very effective early on but are almost useless once Tanks and large balls of Marines enter the battle. Not to mention Widow Mines and Hellbats.

I have read many threads and done lots of testing with this:
http://www.sc2mapster.com/maps/unit-tester

My observation is that the ranged ball effectiveness has made all the difference. Not only do Zerglings have trouble with a ball of Marines, so do any other melee unit, especially Zealots. The bigger the ball the stronger the effect. The tipping point seems to be about 35 supply of Marines vs Zerglings or Zealots. Greater supply makes for greater advantage to the ranged unit.

I used the editor to modify the map and tested different combinations:
-Early game, Zergling (no upgrades) vs Marine (no upgrades)
-Early game, Zergling (speed) vs Marine (shields)
-Zergling Armor +1 at a time
-Zergling with Adrenal Glands (cracklings)
-Zergling HP +5 at a time
-Marine Range -1 at a time
-Marine Period +0.2 at a time (fire rate, bigger is slower)
-Marine Chance -0.2 at a time (likelihood they will fire) that gave some really interesting results. I would love to see every ranged unit start with a minor probability of missing their target that gets better as they get more kills. But that is another topic.
-Testing recombined with Zealots
-Testing recombined with Tanks

From those tests I found that Zergling HP +10 equalized up to about 50 supply and had the least side effects. Although Zealots may also need a slight buff to keep up and could use it against Marines anyway.

I think the upgrade should be HP +15 to be an upgrade and not merely keep pace. Larger also helps more in later game and with tanks.

I would also like to see Adrenal Glands be more useful like in SC1, perhaps 40% increase instead of only 20%.
Edited by Mehkael on 6/13/2013 2:35 PM PDT
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I see what you are saying, but I don't think I agree with this.

I think you have to allow zerglings to offer diminishing returns as the game continues. If you make them even more scalable as you are suggesting, then incrementally they would deal way too much damage for their price.

And the tiering of units is intended to encourage a player to explore in to different units as the game progresses.

I love my zerglings... seriously... getting zergling t-shirts, banners, if they have a plush toy of a zergling it will be mine... probably at least 10 of them, since they swarm ya know. But overall, I think a super-ling build would become dominant if you took the steps outlined in the post. From what I have seen, it's rare for zerg players not to use zerglings to the end, so clearly even with their late game pitfalls, they are still a very viable and cheap unit.
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I don't like this idea at all. For one thing, you didn't even say how to buff zealots to make up for this change. Buffing zealots could make early game protoss VERY op. Secondly, you didn't even discuss how this would affect ZvZ. And thirdly, I'm not sure if you realize how extreme this buff is.

You are proposing a 43% health increase to the most cost effective unit in the game.

Now, when I say cost effective, I mean the DPS per cost. I'm pretty sure that the zergling already has the highest DPS for the price of any unit in the game. If I'm wrong let me know which unit outperforms it. I feel that this upgrade would make zerglings ridiculously op. There simply wouldn't be anything on the ground that could kill them, and anything in the air that could kill them fast enough. Yes, it would make them more viable in the later game, but ask yourself "Should tier 1 units even BE viable late game?". I know terran units are, but is that what we want? Shouldn't there be some reward for investing in high tier units? I think that there definitely should be.

To be honest, I don't really feel like zerg needs buffs or nerfs. Maybe the swarm host should be tweaked a bit (I really don't like units that you can mass, plant, rally, then go make a sandwich and watch the game play itself). I actually really like the changes that Blizzard is proposing. I would recommend in the future that you really think about how drastic your suggestions are. 43% is not a small amount of health. The game doesn't need 43% changes to be balanced. Good changes are generally small. You don't need a big number to make a big difference.

P.S. Just saw that you wanted adrenal glands to do 40% instead of 20%. You're killing me man. What next? Make zerglings fly and shoot lasers out of their asses that do 9999 damage (with an upgrade, of course)?
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No they dont, Zerglings are fine, They cost so little with so much reward
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18.6%

i think swarmhosts should make zerglings
Edited by Oboeman on 6/13/2013 3:58 PM PDT
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Laser beams would be AWESOME!!!

I know 43% is a huge change but in testing a ball of marines or tanks vs lings that was what seemed right. My main observation is that when T can build Marines without gas, has decent range, and shoots air. Now compare that to the only Zerg army unit that does not require gas. Similarly for Zealots. For the PRICE (no gas) Marines are OP, now that the ranged ball is so effective. As an Engineer I see others get hung up on the math instead of what actually works. HP +15 actually works.

Still vs tanks and other higher tier units they would get crushed (and rightly so), but they should be useful and not a complete waste of minerals as they are now.

I apologize if the 20% 40% is not accurate. I spent zero time looking at that but comparing to SC1 again Adrenal Glands no longer seems cost effective. It just does not bump the attack speed enough for how much it costs.

Taking a different approach is there something I am missing to spend my extra minerals on?? When Zerglings are the only option and they don't even reach the front lines it seems unbalanced.
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06/13/2013 02:57 PMPosted by Sanlumiere
If you make them even more scalable as you are suggesting, then incrementally they would deal way too much damage for their price.


They cost so little with so much reward


the marine would LOVE to have a word with you.

IN defense of his argument;

* tier 1.5 marines receive a 22% HP buff
*marines are the most cost effect unit in the game (paired with medivac) CAN counter their counter
* End game lots are extremely efficient vs Zerg and Terran in numbers. +2 can 2 hit lings at 3/3

As it stands lings lack the ability to survive during end game engagements that are not runbys. making a core unit relatively limited in what it can do. Mainly thinking the remax even then they can be crushed. This is especially brought to light in Hellbats, someone did a tester where something like 20 hellbats killed 300 zerglings. (don't quote me)

A more reasonable idea is at Lair tech, req infestation pit? that lings can get a HP buff of +10. this is a 29 % HP upgrade. However even at this low of a number it might break TvZ simply because WM wont be able to 1 hit them. This would most likely be a godsend to lower league players and I haven't eatched enough Terrans at the pro scene to make an accurate prediction.

This won't truly effect ZvP as all splash will still be as damaging, the only difference is that lings will survive linger in a Lot vs ling fight. Likewise, FF would completely negate the lings.

Future problems, Mid game timing attacks would be very interesting. other than that I'm running a blank aside from what i mentioned already.
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I definitely don't want to break early balance. Zergling rush is fine as is. I only see the problem in the mid and late game.

As for Zealots I just tested Zealot with Attack1 and Shields1 vs Zergling with Speed and HP +15. It was close at 50 supply which is pretty good for sizes and timing. But that was just a quick look. If you want more detailed evaluation for Protoss, please add to the discussion and check it out. My interest was where I see the biggest disadvantage with Zergling v Marine.
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@Momentum
Thanks for the support :)

I agree the details need in game testing, required tech, costs all around, and actual size.

With HOTS it seems like an already underpowered unit has become even more useless with Widow Mines and Hellbats. I think the upgrade would be a good compliment to those new units.
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Is there anyway to "reflect" evasion on zerglings. Instead of raising health. The thing I could see is zerglings being harder to hit but not harder to kill.

just a thought. maybe tech that reduces accuracy against them while they are on creep? something I don't know.
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@Sanlumiere

Interesting thought.

In a similar direction while I was modding the map I found an option for Marines called "Chance" that randomly fails to fire, based on the percentage set. Marines are currently at 1 therefore 100%. When set to 0.8 they will randomly fail to fire 0.2 percent of the time, which gave some very interesting results.

When the Marines had high accuracy they would win pretty soundly. When they had bad accuracy they would lose badly. I think it would be cool if more "experience" units did more damage, but that get really complicated fast.

I don't know how well evasion would work though. I suppose it could be basically the same thing just in reverse. That way it would only apply to Zerglings and not mess up everything else.
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This is stupid idea, Op needs to spend his larvae on bigger units or learn how to drone to get bigger units.
or just use swarmhosts.
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I don't think the answer is in making zerglings more efficient. I think the answer is in reducing the size of the window between when hellbats can hit the field, and when ultras can hit the field. It's okay if your zerglings melt if your main army has real beef in it (real beef. not roach beef.), but its not okay if your zerglings melt when you can't have any kind of hefty ground units.

When you can't have a hefty ground army without leaving your pants down, and your opponent can melt your only reasonable early-mid defense with MMH pushes for a 3-5 minute stretch of the game, its easy to feel like the units you're forced to use(lings/banes) aren't enough. I'd argue that the other guy just has a window that's way too big, instead. Having a stretch of time where a bio army can just roast your defenses is fine.. but when that window is so big that any kind of delaying action or harass/counter play can't cover the whole gap, you have... well, the current state of ZvT.

Just my .02
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Is there anyway to "reflect" evasion on zerglings. Instead of raising health. The thing I could see is zerglings being harder to hit but not harder to kill.

just a thought. maybe tech that reduces accuracy against them while they are on creep? something I don't know.


RNG in RTS is generally considered awful. In BW, you used to be able to shoot up cliffs with a 50% accuracy penalty, and people still !@#$% about it.
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Consider this:

Currently, there is no terran ground army without hellbats that can defeat a zergling burrow ambush of equal cost or supply (either one).

A similar concept exists vs protoss, and no, zealots are not the answer in that situation (although protoss never move out without observers, so that's a bit moot).

* End game lots are extremely efficient vs Zerg and Terran in numbers. +2 can 2 hit lings at 3/3


This actually isn't true. Zealots will only 2-hit lings if their attack upgrade is 1 higher than the zerg's armor upgrade level.
Edited by Impulse on 6/13/2013 5:53 PM PDT
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If anything, Roaches need some sort of boost late game. Who even uses their burrow-move ability?
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06/13/2013 02:57 PMPosted by Sanlumiere
I love my zerglings... seriously... getting zergling t-shirts, banners, if they have a plush toy of a zergling it will be mine... probably at least 10 of them, since they swarm ya know.


i think youll love this http://i.imgur.com/HJLFRu3.jpg

however im not sure if you can buy them, there used to be a thread about blizzard making plushies, which they should, or at least carbot animations. However i found this for you
http://i.imgur.com/HJLFRu3.jpg
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:)

http://imgur.com/a/NWq4B

Instructions!!! lol
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